The rhubarb in my garden is like the Energizer bunny— it just keeps going and going. Given my (relative) success with jam, I decided to try my hand at pickling the excess rhubarb. Rhubarb is a little mushy when it's pickled and canned but the brine and spices are lovely. I've used it as a condiment on hot dogs with riata, on grilled chicken and vegetables with naan— it adds a little sour, spicy kick and who doesn't like that?
Curried & Pickled Rhubarb
1 pound rhubarb, rinsed and cut into 1 inch matchsticks 2 cups apple cider 1 1/4 cup raw sugar 3 peels of lime peel, left whole 1 cinnamon stick, broken and divided among the jars 1/4 cup vegetable oil 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seed 1/2 teaspoon mustard seed 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed 1/2 teaspoon red chile flakes 1/2 teaspoon coriander seed 1/4 teaspoon cumin seed 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped and divided among the jars 2 jalapenos 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Preparation Prepare 6 half pint jars for canning. In a medium-sized sauce pot, bring the vinegar, sugar, lime peel and cinnamon stick to a gentle boil and hold over low heat.
In another sauté pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium high heat until hot. Stir in the fenugreek, mustard seeds, fennel seed, coriander seeds, chile flakes and cumin seeds. When the spices begin to pop (about 4 minutes), add the ginger, garlic, salt, jalapeños and onion, stirring until soft and slightly caramelized, about 6 to 8 minutes. Set aside.
Pack the canning jars with the rhubarb and cilantro, leaving 1/2 inch of head space. Pour equal spoonfuls of the spice mixture into each jar. Pour the hot vinegar over the carrots, submerging them and leaving about a 1/2 inch of head space. The contents should sit right below the bottom ring of the glass jar.
Process the jars in a water bath for 15 minutes. Make sure the seals are secure and store in a cool, dark cupboard for at least three weeks before eating.